Monday, 24 August 2015

Tread (le) ing the Primrose Path

I blame it on my childhood days when we moved from place to place and often country to country as my father (a Flight-Lieutenant in the Royal Air Force) took up various postings.  Whenever we moved we left things behind us.  Either gave stuff away or simply left it for the Air Force to dispose of as they pleased.  No charity shops to donate to then!

So, when we finally came back to the UK to live and my father left the Air Force, we had very little in the way of possessions - or at least, I did.

And so (I think) I collect. Wool, material, typewriters, plates, dolls (and some years ago teddy bears) and sewing-machines....and it is to this category that my latest acquisition belongs.

I found it at a local vide-grenier yesterday, and brought it home in triumph in the boot of the car.  A splendid example of a Singer treadle sewing machine.

Front view

It was manufactured in 1923, so it is looking pretty good for its age.  After I've given it a little TLC, it will look even better!

Although made in England, it was clearly intended to be sold in France, as you can see from the 'Fabrication Anglaise' in gold lettering on the top of the arm.

Top view

The copper Trade Mark plaque is still bright and undamaged...


And it also came with the instruction book...

Instruction book

Instruction book title page

...which is, of course, in French.

I'm not going to do anything other than gently restore it. No re-painting, no cleaning to within an inch of its life.  I'm going to re-polish the table by sanding it lightly and polishing - just to get rid of the watermarks really. I imagine, by the hay and dust I vacuumed out of the interior, that it has stood in a barn for some time!

Since I only got it yesterday, I haven't had much time to deal with it, but I'll give you an update from time to time and, hopefully, you'll get to see it working again!

Maybe I'll even sew something with it...


Elizabethd said...

It's a beautiful machine...but how many have you got now??

Marigold Jam said...

Like you my chilchood was spent moving about and so I had few possessions but in my case it has made me want to be unencumbered with "stuff" and I am forever bemoaning the amount of things I have and having a good clear out!! Hope you and your Singer will be very happy together and I sometimes wish I hadn't been quite so hasty in getting rid of my old Singer hand machine as for some things it worked better than my Frister Rossman!!

Serenata said...

I love antique Singer Sewing machines and have quite a collection myself of which I think I have photos of most on my blog. Sadly though I have decided I really need to part with most of them, as I just don't have the room. Trouble is you can hardly give them away here and yet all mine are in fully working order and if I lived in say Australia for instance they go for quite a good price - or so my friend has told me! lol ;-)

I have a couple of treadles though that I am keeping.

Yours looks a beauty as well.

Sharon said...

WOW Penny, what a wonderful find, it really is an attractive machine and a treasure to behold. When we moved to our home here in Spain there was an old treadle table from a machine but the machine went with the previous owners of the house. My husband gave the treadle part away and I could kick myself (or him!) now as they make such lovely pieces of furniture.
I look forward to seeing this again when you've given it a little clean up :)
Hugs Sharon in Spain x

Janet said...

What an absolute treasure. Lucky you.

Babajeza said...

It's beautiful! Lucky you. :-)

Carolyn said...

I look forward to seeing it in use. I occasionally use the one we have at Wolston Historic House. People are quite intrigued by it (especially the young ones).

Bev C said...

Hello Penny,

Lucky you to get the whole machine including instructions. Sewing machines were so pretty back then.

Happy days.

Rambler said...

I deeply regret parting with my Singer Treadle Machine when I married my second husband. We both had our own houses so a lot of 'stuff' had to go before we moved into our marital home. The machine had been bought by my Mum when she and Dad got married in 1932; it was well-used by her as she made all my clothes and a lot of my brother's when he was young, all her own clothes, curtains, furnishings, clothes, etc for friends and neighbours and then for the grandchildren as they came along. It still had the original hand-written bill of sale in one of the drawers, plus shuttles and needles, instruction book and small can of machine oil. It had been kept beautifully and had no marks or stains on its polished wood - and in those days before eBay, I think I took it to a charity shop. :(

Jean | said...

Penny, what a wonderful find! Reminds me of the old treadle Singer my grandmother had when I was a little girl. It was an antique then. Wish I knew how long she'd had it, etc. AND wish I had it now. Didn't think to ask for it when she died, as I was so shattered.

Joy said...

Great find, Penny. I saw a treadle machine a few months ago at a garage sale (yard sale) and it was very inexpensive. I thought about buying it, but knew my husband wouldn't be happy about more 'stuff' in the house. I wish I would have bought it though, as I keep thinking if we lose electricity, my current machine will be of no use. :( My Grandmother also had one of those machines, as teenager, I sewed on it.